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Nov 15, 2012

NaNoWriMo Tip #15: Write Your Scene By Scene Outline

Lindsey playing Liz. A scene about a scene.

These are my personal tips for NaNoWriMo. You know the drill. Take only what works.

Another outline? Seriously?

Yes, my friends. Yes. Another outline. Feel free to call it a Pre-Rough Draft if it makes you feel better.

This time it’s digital.

That’s right, time to type your outline into you computer. Refer to whatever previous outlines/cards/D&D character sheets you’ve filled out so far. This outline should show act, chapter and scene. It goes in order of your book (so, all the onstage scenes) and its more detailed than the previous outlines.

Your Scene Outline is like your flight plan. Once you have it in place, to a final check-off list to make sure your plane will lift off the ground:

1. If you can, this is a good time to gauge your final wordcount. You’ll the number of chapters, and the number of soldiers in each chapter. You’ll want to make sure you’re on target for a word count appropriate for your genre.

2. Check that you know the time and location of each scene, who will be in it, and whose PoV its from. Make sure no subplots or supporting characters have been left offstage inexplicably. Your protagonist should not be overshadowed by another character. Also scan the action and reaction scenes and make sure your protagonist is driving the action, not just responding to the actions of others.

3. If your word count is on the low side, supporting characters have been shunted aside, or worst of all, you protagonist is passive or not onstage often enough, you’ll have to add. If your word count is too high, you’ll have to cut. (I’ll have suggestions about how to do that further on.)

4. Look for gaping plot holes. You’d think it would be impossible to get through three or four kinds of outline and miss a gaping plot hole. It’s not.

5. Make the sure that overall, the book has rising tension. Did you accidently squander all your Monster Attacks in the beginning? Do you have five more chapters after the climax? Fix stuff like that.
If you prefer these Tips as an ebook you can buy it here for $0.99:


1 comment:

Ink in the Book said...

This is the step I am on right now for my present WIP. Not my Nano project, but the one on the side. The one I still haven't revealed anything about. My surprise...

As for Nano, I chugging along:)